Dr. Johanna Kaplan Founder and Director of the Washington Anxiety Center of Capitol Hill
Dr. Johanna Kaplan is the Founder and Director of the Washington Anxiety Center of Capitol Hill. She is a licensed child and adult clinical psychologist in Washington, DC, Maryland, and Virginia. She earned her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from The Catholic University of America and her undergraduate degree in Psychology and Communications from American University in Washington, D.C.
Prior to opening the Washington Anxiety Center, she worked for four years at the Center for Anxiety and Behavior Change in Rockville MD. She also completed 18 months of post-doctoral training at the Institute of Living/Hartford Hospital at the Anxiety Disorders Center/Center for Cognitive Behavioral Therapy under the direct supervision of David Tolin, Ph.D.
Additionally, she completed a 2-year post-baccalaureate fellowship and a 6-year pre-doctoral fellowship in the Mood and Anxiety Disorders Program at the National Institute of Mental Health. Dr. Kaplan has received extensive clinical and clinical-research training in anxiety, mood, and obsessive-compulsive spectrum disorders and has completed clinical and research work in private practice, community, counseling center, and hospital-based settings.
Together, she has over 100 presentations/publications in the domain of clinical anxiety in adult, adolescent, and child populations. She has been interviewed for several articles in Parent magazine, parent.com, Romper.com, klicknews.com, the Hillrag.com, and has been interviewed by several local television media outlets. She continues to actively pursue her education in evidence-based treatments for anxiety in these populations.
Dr. Catalina Perez Staff Clinical Psychologist at the Washington Anxiety Center of Capitol Hill
Dr. Catalina Perez is a licensed clinical psychologist in Washington, D.C. She is a fully-bilingual provider and offers services in English and Spanish. Dr. Perez obtained her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology at The Catholic University of America (CUA), with a concentration in Children, Families, and Cultures. While in graduate school, she trained at the Child Development Program, Pain Medicine Clinic, and the Division of Neuropsychology at Children’s National Main Hospital. She also received specialized training in Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavior Therapy and treated young adults at CUA’s Counseling Center.
Dr. Perez completed a pre-doctoral clinical psychology internship in Chicago at the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago, affiliated with Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. During her internship year, Dr. Perez offered outpatient therapy services through the Mood and Anxiety Program, the Right Start Clinic (early childhood), the Trauma Clinic, and worked with youth with chronic medical conditions. She co-facilitated a child anxiety therapy group and a parent group for young children with disruptive behavior. Dr. Perez also conducted risk-assessments and provided intensive care to high-risk patients.
Upon graduation, Dr. Perez returned to Children’s National Main Hospital and completed a post-doctorate fellowship in Pediatric Primary Care where she provided consultation and therapy to patients ages 0 to 22, and closely collaborated with pediatricians. During her fellowship year, Dr. Perez worked with patients presenting with ADHD, disruptive behavior, anxiety, depression, trauma, suicidal ideation, self-injurious behavior, sleep difficulties, picky eating, toileting problems, learning and developmental delays, chronic pain, and issues related to medical adjustment and adherence. She also provided services to adolescent mothers with perinatal and postpartum anxiety and depression.
Overall, Dr. Perez has a wide range of experience working with children, adolescents and their families. Dr. Perez also enjoys working with adults, especially during important transitional stages in their lives. At the Washington Anxiety Center of Capitol Hill, Dr. Perez treats a range of anxiety disorder, including obsessive-compulsive disorder, and common childhood behavioral difficulties. She employs evidence-based cognitive and behavioral interventions, such as Behavioral Activation, Exposure and Response Prevention, and Parent Management Training. Dr. Perez is a firm advocate of early and preventative intervention and enjoys collaborating with local and international providers to expand access to behavior health services.
“I am a strong believer in family-centered care; caregivers are one of the most important agents of change for children. I strive to acknowledge, understand and respect your family’s cultural beliefs and values, so that together, we may agree on the best interventions that will set your child up for success and align with your family’s practices. I truly hope that through the therapeutic process, you and your child will find greater calmness, balance, meaning, and fulfillment in your daily life.”
To contact Dr. Perez, please call her at please call her at (202) 768-6494
Dr. Jennifer Meeter Staff Clinical Psychologist
Dr. Jennifer Meeter earned her Psy.D. in Clinical Psychology at Long Island University - Post Campus, and her B.A. in Psychology from the University of Rochester. Dr. Meeter completed a predoctoral internship at Andrus Children’s Center in Yonkers, New York, where she specialized in the treatment of children, adolescents, and their families.
Prior to joining the Washington Anxiety Center of Capitol Hill, Dr. Meeter completed a two-year clinical postdoctoral fellowship at the Kennedy Krieger Institute’s Behavior Management Clinic via the John Hopkins University School of Medicine. At the Kennedy Krieger Institute, she received specialized training in Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) for children and adolescents with anxiety and mood disorders, and behavioral parent training for children with ADHD, and disruptive, impulse-control, and conduct disorders.
Dr. Meeter’s specific clinical expertise includes the treatment of selective mutism, separation anxiety, specific phobias, obsessive-compulsive disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, and body-focused repetitive behaviors. She also has expertise in behavioral parent training and behavior management for disruptive behaviors including noncompliance, tantrums, verbal and physical aggression. In addition, Dr. Meeter has experience in treating difficulties related to school, emotion regulation, sleep, feeding, and toileting.
She has experience providing a wide range of behavioral and cognitive behavioral interventions to children, adolescents, and their families, including Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP), Habit Reversal Training (HRT), Parent Management Training (PMT), and Parent-Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT). Dr. Meeter provides individual therapy, family therapy, parent training and coaching, and school consultations. Dr. Meeter often uses live coaching methods to provide children and caregivers with practice and support to promote the skill acquisition that leads to meaningful behavior change.
“I am dedicated to establishing a collaborative, compassionate, and supportive relationship with all of my patients and their families. I believe that caregivers can be great change agents for their children, thus I work closely with parents, using evidence-based treatments to empower them to manage behavioral challenges, improve the parent-child relationship, and support their children’s coping. I value collaboration in the therapeutic relationship, thus I’m committed to understanding families’ goals, and providing the support to effectively meet those goals.”
Dr. Meeter is licensed in Virginia and Washington, DC.
Dr. Rachel LaFleur Staff Clinical Psychologist at the Washington Anxiety Center of Capitol Hill
Dr. Rachel LaFleur is a licensed psychologist in the District of Columbia and Maryland. She earned her M.Ed., Ed.S., and Ph.D. in School Psychology from Georgia State University, and her B.A. in Psychology from Binghamton University.
Prior to joining the Washington Anxiety Center of Capitol Hill, Dr. LaFleur completed a predoctoral internship at Boys Town’s Center for Behavioral Health via the Nebraska Internship Consortium in Professional Psychology. At Boys Town, Dr. LaFleur received specialized training to treat adolescents. After graduation, she completed a clinical postdoctoral fellowship at the Kennedy Krieger Institute’s Behavior Management Clinic via the John Hopkins University School of Medicine. At the Kennedy Krieger Institute, she received specialized training to treat children and provided outpatient psychotherapy services. Dr. LaFleur also has specialization in providing treatment to adult populations managing stress, anxiety, relationship challenges, and life transitions.
Dr. LaFleur has expertise treating anxiety (i.e., separation anxiety, performance anxiety, specific phobias, and generalized anxiety), mood (i.e., depression, emotion dysregulation, and low frustration tolerance), disruptive behavior (i.e., interruptions, tantrums/outbursts, verbal and physical aggression, and non-compliance), as well as common preschool and school-aged concerns, including difficulties related to homework completion, sleep, eating, toileting, and school.
She has experience providing a wide range of behavioral and cognitive behavioral interventions, including Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP), Mindfulness, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), Behavioral Activation, Parent Management Training (PMT), Habit Reversal Training (HRT), Motivational Interviewing (MI), and Functional Family Therapy (FFT). Dr. LaFleur is also a certified Parent-Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT) therapist. PCIT is a well-researched and highly effective treatment for children ages 2-7 with behavioral and anxiety challenges. Dr. LaFleur draws from her background in school psychology to provide school consultation and commonly uses live coaching methods to provide families with the practice they need to move through treatment efficiently and effectively.
“I believe that a prerequisite to treatment is a warm, collaborative relationship. Approaching care with integrity and without judgment, earning your trust, and honoring your goals and expertise matter to me. I use cutting-edge, evidence-based treatments to help patients and families to get unstuck and find meaningful and measurable change. I'll share my skills with you and you'll make them your own. When you complete treatment, you'll understand why it worked and be prepared to apply your skills to challenges that may arise in the future.”
Dr. Alyssa Adams Staff Clinical Psychologist at the Washington Anxiety Center of Capitol Hill
Dr. Adams is a licensed clinical psychologist in Washington, DC and Virginia. She earned her M.A. and Psy.D. in Clinical Psychology from Marywood University in Scranton, PA and B.S. in Psychology from the Pennsylvania State University. Dr. Adams completed an APA-approved pre-doctoral internship at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Washington, DC (DCVA), where she dually specialized in health psychology and neuropsychology. Following internship, she completed a two-year, post-doctoral fellowship in research and clinical neuropsychology at the War Related Illness and Injury Study Center (WRIISC) at the DCVA.
Prior to joining the Washington Anxiety Center of Capitol Hill,Dr. Adams worked as a clinical and health psychologist in the Pain Clinic at the DCVA and at MedStar National Rehabilitation Hospital in Washington, DC. In addition, Dr. Adams directed the first stand-alone integrative health clinic in the Veterans Affairs system, where she managed an outpatient department that provided integrative medicine approaches to chronic health issues. Most recently, Dr. Adams served as the operations manager for the national adaptive sports medicine program in the VA.
Dr. Adams has expertise in treating anxiety, such as performance anxiety, specific phobias, panic disorder, generalized anxiety, public speaking anxiety, and health-related anxiety. She also has expertise in treating depression, managing work stress, and coping with chronic medical conditions. She has experience providing Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), CBT for pain management, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Motivational Interviewing (MI), mindfulness approaches, such as Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) and Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT), Behavioral Activation, and Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP). Her research interests include the impact of chronic medical issues on mood, nutrition for mental health, and anxiety in families with severe food allergies.
She works with both adolescents and adult populations.
“I believe transformation is fueled by a collaborative partnership between the client and therapist. I foster an environment that is supportive, compassionate, and non-judgmental. I work to support you in attaining your goals for therapy as well as creating a life where you are thriving.”
Dr. Blaise Worden Staff Clinical Psychologist at the Washington Anxiety Center of Capitol Hill
Dr. Blaise Worden is a licensed psychologist in Connecticut. She earned her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from Rutgers University, and her B.A. in Psychology from the University of Wisconsin.
Prior to joining the Washington Anxiety Center of Capitol Hill, Dr. Worden completed a predoctoral internship at Hartford Consortium (University of Connecticut Health Center, Connecticut VA System, and Community Mental Health Services). She then completed a two-year clinical postdoctoral fellowship Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) at the Institute of Living Anxiety Disorders Center in Hartford, CT, receiving specialized training in CBT obsessive-compulsive and related disorders and anxiety disorders and doing clinical research.
Dr. Worden specializes in the treatment of obsessive compulsive, anxiety, and related disorders in adults. She has particular experience with CBT for obsessive-compulsive disorder and hoarding disorder. She has been conducting hoarding disorder treatment groups for the past 10 years and has published a manual on treatment for hoarding disorder. She is the primary investigator on a federally-funded research project examining decision making processes in individuals with pathological anxiety or hoarding behaviors, and served as a clinician on a 5-year clinical trial investigating the neural mechanisms of cognitive-behavioral therapy for hoarding disorder. She has authored or co-authored over 20 book chapters and scientific articles. Dr. Worden specializes in CBT and utilizes a wide range of techniques and treatments such as Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP), Mindfulness, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), Behavioral Activation, Habit Reversal Training (HRT), and Motivational Interviewing (MI).
“Staying up-to-date about treatment advances and providing the best available treatments is important to me. It also important that we tailor these treatments to your motivational level, circumstances, preferences, and culture. OCD and related disorders, and anxiety disorders, are treatable, even if you have been through some not-so-helpful treatments in the past! In treatment we will work together so that you have less mood and anxiety symptoms, and see functional improvement in your daily life as soon as possible.”
Dr. Worden is licensed in Connecticut and in the process of licensure in Washington, DC. She only sees patients via tele-therapy.
To contact Dr. Worden, please call her at please call her at (202) 768-6494
Dr. Shieka Glenn Staff Clinical Psychologist at the Washington Anxiety Center of Capitol Hill (onboarding in August 2021)
Dr. Shieka Glenn will complete her postdoctoral fellowship at Georgetown University in 2021. She earned her Psy.D. in Clinical Psychology and M.A. in Clinical Psychology from Adler University in Chicago, Illinois. She earned her undergraduate degree in Psychology from South Carolina State University in Orangeburg, South Carolina.
Prior to joining the Washington Anxiety Center of Capitol Hill, Dr. Glenn completed an APA-approved pre-doctoral internship at Bowling Green State University. She has worked in the college counseling setting for three years and the community mental health setting for two years.
Dr. Glenn’s clinical interest include mood disorders, generalized anxiety disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, specific phobias, and social anxiety disorder. She has experience providing Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), Behavioral Activation, Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP), and mindfulness approaches. Dr. Glenn provides individual therapy to the adult population.
Dr. Glenn has been a Staff Sergeant (E-6) and squad leader in the army reserves for 15 years. She is also committed to providing evidence-based services to culturally and ethnically diverse populations.
“The journey to healing starts with the commitment to self. I aim to provide a space of safety, trust, and acceptance while remaining curious, open-minded, and collaborative. If you are ready, I am here to support and empower you on your path to healing.”
Dr. Glenn's Washington DC licensure is currently in process. She sees patients in person and via teletherapy.
To contact Dr. Glenn, please call her at please call her at (202) 768-6494
Dr. Lediya Dumessa Staff Clinical Psychologist at the Washington Anxiety Center of Capitol Hill (onboarding in August 2021)
Dr. Lediya Dumessa earned her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from Mississippi State University, her M.A in Clinical Psychology from Western Carolina University, and her B.A. in Psychology from University of Tennessee. She completed her pre-doctoral internship training at Johns Hopkins University Counseling Center. Prior to that, she trained in various settings including specialty outpatient clinics, residential treatment programs, substance use units, and inpatient hospital.
Prior to joining the Washington Anxiety Center of Capitol Hill, Dr. Dumessa worked as a staff psychologist at Johns Hopkins University Counseling Center providing brief therapy, group therapy, and workshops to undergraduate and graduate students. She has experience treating varied presenting concerns, such as depression, anxiety, adjustment issues, disruptive behavior in children, grief, trauma, acculturation issues, interpersonal difficulties, and substance use disorders.
Dr. Dumessa utilizes a wide range of interventions including, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Exposure Therapy, Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), Mindfulness, Parent Management Training (PMT), Trauma Focused CBT, and Motivational Interviewing (MI). She provides treatment in various modalities including individual, couples, group, and family coaching.
“As a therapist, I integrate cognitive-behavioral and humanistic theories, which I find effective in building meaningful therapeutic relationships while simultaneously challenging and restructuring thoughts and modifying relevant behaviors. My personal and professional experiences living in different parts of the world have increased my sensitivity to the differences in how individuals from different cultural backgrounds experience mental health concerns and seek treatment. As such, I am passionate about making mental health resources accessible to a wide range of communities and strive to provide culturally sensitive treatments. I am also interested in examining protective factors that promote resilience in individuals with trauma, and in implementing research about adverse childhood experiences to promote awareness of their lifetime impact.”
Dr. Dumessa's Maryland and Washington DC licensure is currently in process. She sees patients in person and via teletherapy.
To contact Dr. Dumessa, please call her at please call her at (202) 768-6494
Dr. Rachel Lacks Staff Clinical Psychologist at the Washington Anxiety Center of Capitol Hill (onboarding in early July 2021)
Dr. Rachel Lacks is a child and adolescent psychologist practicing under the supervision of Dr. Johanna Kaplan. She earned her PhD in Counseling Psychology at New York University, her Master's in Education at Harvard University, and her Bachelor's of Science in Human Development at Cornell University. Dr. Lacks completed a predoctoral internship and postdoctoral fellowship at Center for Anxiety in New York, where she specialized in cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) for anxiety and related disorders.
Dr. Lacks has trained extensively in many areas, employing evidence-based treatments for a variety of presenting concerns. As a post-doctoral fellow and predoctoral intern at Center for Anxiety, Dr. Lacks worked with children, adolescents, and adults using CBT for generalized anxiety, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), panic, specific phobias, social anxiety, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, parent training, trichotillomania and depression. Dr. Lacks also provided Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) to promote mindfulness, emotion regulation, interpersonal effectiveness, and distress tolerance skills.
During her pre-doctoral training years, she trained at Mt. Sinai Hospital in the department of OCD, Tic Disorders, and Tourette's Disorder, treating both children and adults with OCD and/or tic disorders. She utilized Exposure and Response Prevention (ExRP) to teach individuals to systematically approach anxiety-provoking thoughts and situations while effectively managing maladaptive and/or compulsive responses, as well as Habit Reversal Training (HRT) to teach individuals to engage in competing responses to counteract motor and vocal tics. She also received extensive training in working with children with selective mutism during her time at Child Mind Institute and Kurtz Psychology. Dr. Lacks provided both individual and intensive group services to children struggling with selective mutism, using behavioral techniques and collaborative efforts to provide intervention both at home and in schools. While at Kurtz Psychology, Dr. Lacks also received training in Parent Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT) to help parents manage child externalizing behavior and improve the parent-child relationship. Additionally, Dr. Lacks worked at the New York University Center for Counseling and Community Wellbeing as a student pre-doctoral clinician conducting psychological assessments for children and adolescents and preparing comprehensive integrated testing reports.
Dr. Lacks strives to teach children and adolescents about the thoughts, emotions, and body sensations they are experiencing, and couples this with cognitive interventions to identify and challenge maladaptive thoughts, behavioral strategies to alter behavioral patterns, and coping/relaxation techniques. Dr. Lacks makes sessions fun, engaging, and appropriately challenging, and works collaboratively with parents/family members, school personnel, medical professionals, and anyone else involved in patient care.
Dr. Lacks will see children and adolescents at the Washington Anxiety Center of Capitol hill via teletherapy.
To contact Dr. Lacks, please call her at please call her at (202) 768-6494